From 1988 to 1992, Fred Savage was one of the most well-known child actors in America. Starring as the central figure, Kevin Arnold, on the critically acclaimed TV show "The Wonder Years," Savage was only 12 when he became the youngest person to be nominated for an Emmy Award for Best Performance by a Lead Actor. Throughout his career, he has received numerous awards and nominations for his wide range of acting work, which includes roles in movies such as "The Princess Bride," "The Wizard," and "The Rules of Attraction." More recently, Savage has been involved in the production of a number of movies and TV series. Working successfully on the other side of the camera, Savage has directed episodes of some of the most successful sitcoms in recent TV history, including "Modern Family," "2 Broke Girls," and "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia." His numerous talents continue to make him one of the most sought-after Hollywood directors today.
Savage was 17 when "The Wonder Years" ended and he stopped acting to attend Stanford University, choosing the Palo Alto campus over Ivy League schools because he wanted to remain close to his family. He joined the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity and attended a summer session at USC where he made a sixteen-millimeter film that could be considered his first stab at directing. It was called "Go Fish," a short film about a high-stakes card game.
Still, Savage hadn't lost his passion for acting. After his junior year, he dropped out of Stanford when he scored an acting gig on a short-lived NBC comedy called "Working," which lasted thirty-five episodes before cancelation. Savage then returned to Stanford and completed his degree in 1999, earning a Bachelor of Arts in English.
"College was huge only because I lived such a different life when I was a kid," he said in an interview published by Stanford Magazine. Speaking to the importance of his undergraduate days, Savage explained, "It really taught me how to deal with people on a normal level and how to not be an actor; just be a normal guy. I was in a fraternity. I was a total idiot, and it was awesome!"